Strikeforce "Fedor vs. Silva" Live Results: Silva Takes Fedor Out in 2, Kharitonov KOs Arlovski to Advance in World Grand Prix Heavyweight Tournament
Strikeforce's third event of 2011 hosts the first set of two quarterfinal bouts for its World Grand Prix Heavyweight Tournament. Fedor Emelianenko returns against Antonio Silva, while Andrei Arlovski meets Sergei Kharitonov in the co-headliner. The Fabulous Forum will have results from the Izod Center in East Rutherford, N.J., for all of the evening's bouts.
Fedor Emelianenko vs. Antonio Silva
The MMA world's heart skipped a beat when Fabricio Werdum submitted Emelianenko with an armbar-triangle choke combination in a scant 69 seconds last June in San Jose. It was the loss no one saw coming for the world's consensus No. 1 heavyweight - his first defeat in a decade and only the second loss of his illustrious 11-year career. Was it a fluke or are we seeing the beginning of the end for the fighter many think is the greatest mixed martial artist to ever set foot in the sport?
Silva, a 6-foot-4 Brazilian behemoth, will weigh 285 pounds when he enters the cage - some 55 pounds heavier than Emelianenko. Riding in on a two-fight win streak, look for Silva to throw early and heavy, and to avoid a ground fight with the tricky Sambo expert.
R1 - Emelinaneko opens with his trademark overhand right and follow-up strikes, but Silva deflects, and tries to return fire. Silva bullies Emelianenko to the fence, but referee Dan Miragliotta doesn't like the lull and re-starts them centercage. Silva begins to pursue Emelianenko and corners him against the fence, hoping his extra weight will tire the Russian out. The pair spills to the canvas. Emelianenko stays standing at first, then meets his opponent on the ground, moving briefly to side control. Silva escapes to his feet and lands a whopping right hand to Emelianenko's chin on the fence, then takes him down. Silva might have eked out that round with this last campaign and is already giving the Russian his toughest fight in ages. Silva 10-9
R2- Silva takes Emelianenko down at the bell and has side mount. Emelianenko looks tired and clings to his aggressor. Silva has mount shortly after and Emelianenko flips to his stomach, then to his back to fend off mounting punches. Emelianenko can only defend at this point and it feels like time is running out. In another stunning move, Silva lines up an arm-triangle choke, moves to side control and begins to squeeze. The crowd erupts as Emelianenko escapes. Emelianenko is where we never see him - in total survival mode with a minute left. Silva then springs across Emelianenko's body and goes for his leg, but the battered Russian grabs the Brazilian's foot for a toehold just as the bell sounds. Silva 10-8
Between rounds, Emelianenko's right eye has swelled completely shut. The fight is stopped by the attending physician, with Silva delivering the best performance of his career against one of the sport's all-time greats. Silva faces either Alistair Overeem or Fabricio Werdum in the semifinal round of what is already turning out to be a gripping tournament.
"Maybe this is the last time," says Emelianenko afterward, hinting at his retirement plans. "Maybe this is God's will."
Silva def. Emelianenko - TKO (Doctor's Stoppage) 5:00 R2
Andrei Arlovski vs. Sergei Kharitonov
Arlovski (15-8) is a former UFC heavyweight champion, but has suffered brutal knockouts in two of his last three straight losses. Look for the Belarusian bomber to use his fast footwork and hand combinations to either catch or outwork his opponent.
Kharitonov (17-4) made his name in Japan's Pride Fighting Championships, but injuries have hampered his activity of late. A training partner to Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem at the Golden Glory gym in Holland, the former airborne trooper is known for his iron chin and plodding, headhunter style. Don't expect anything different here.
R1 - Kharitonov measures Arlovski with a pair of jabs, but Arlovski answers with high and low kicks to back him off. Arlovski looks jittery and allows Kharitonov to corner him, but lands knees and uppercuts when they clinch. Arlovski is connecting with single shots, but doesn't seem to have his timing down. Kharitonov corners the former UFC champion again and unloads with body shots, uppercuts, and hooks. Arlovski is in big trouble, and falls to his back from a big Kharitonov right hook. Kharitonov follows up with ground punches and knocks Arlovski out cold.
"I don't care what the experts say. I'm going to win this tournament," says Kharitonov, who advances to the World Grand Prix Heavyweight Tournament semifinals.
Kharitonov def. Arlovksi - KO 2:39 R1
Lavar Johnson vs. Shane Del Rosario
R1 - Johnson knocks Del Rosario off balance with his first push forward, but Del Rosario regains his composure, ties Johnson up, and takes him down. Eating a few punches into his guard, Johnson then escapes to his feet. Johnson is trying to land jabs and straights, but Del Rosario gets the better of the exchanges with high kicks and jabs of his own, before he grounds Johnson again. Del Rosario moves to a high mount, as Johnson tries to tie up his hands and ride out the round. Inching his way up Johnson's body, Del Rosario then pitches off the side for the armbar finish. Del Rosario preserves his pristine 11-0 record.
Del Rosario def. Johnson - Submission (Armbar) 4:31 R1
Chad Griggs vs. Gian Villante
R1 - Griggs crowds Villante from the bell, but the Ring of Combat champion stands his ground - this looks like a brawl early on. Villante tries to trap Griggs on the fence, but man who stopped Bobby Lashley last August has other plans. Griggs continues attacking the local fighter with inside hooks and drops him twice, convincing referee Yves Lavigne to intervene shortly after.
Griggs def. Villante - TKO (Referee Stoppage - Strikes) 2:49 R1
Valentijn Overeem vs. Ray Sefo
R1 - Overeem opens up with two left high kicks, which Sefo blocks before pushing the Strikeforce heavyweight champion's older brother to the fence with wild swings. After a few brief trades, Overeem grounds Sefo to side control and latches onto the Xtreme Couture fighter's neck for the finish.
Overeem def. Sefo - Submission (Neck Crank) 1:37 R1
John Cholish def. Marc Stevens - Submission (Kneebar) 3:57 R2
Igor Gracie def. John Salgado - Submission (Arm-Triangle Choke from side control) 3:04 R2
Sam Oropeza def. Don Carlo-Clauss - Verbal Tapout (Strikes) 4:10 R1
Josh Laberge def. Anthony Leone - TKO (Doctor's Stoppage) 5:00 R1
Jason McLean def. Kevin Roddy - Split Decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)
-- Loretta Hunt, reporting from New Jersey